Concrete starts to flow at Muskrat Falls

Ashley Fitzpatrick
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Nalcor Energy says first pour milestone for project

The hydroelectric facility at Muskrat Falls on Labrador’s Lower Churchill River is moving from concept to concrete reality.

Nalcor Energy has issued a news release marking the start of concrete pouring for the spillway structure at the Muskrat Falls site. The facility will require concrete for the spillway, powerhouse and dam structures.

According to Nalcor, 560,000 cubic metres of concrete will be needed for the powerhouse and spillway structures — enough for three Hebron gravity‐based structures (GBS).

The Hebron GBS is currently under construction at Nalcor’s Bull Arm fabrication facility.

At Muskrat Falls, another 200,000 cubic metres will be needed to build the dams. According to Nalcor, the two will collectively be longer than seven CFL football fields, with one 32 metres high and another 20 metres.

The concrete work for Muskrat Falls started today.

“We have reached yet another significant milestone for construction of the Muskrat Falls project,” said Gilbert Bennett, a vice-president at Nalcor Energy and lead on the power project.

“This milestone was achieved through the commitment of the entire team working together on this historic project. Their dedication to safety, productivity and teamwork is evident on this project every day.”

Construction of the Muskrat Falls dam and Labrador-Island Link — for the transmission of power from the Lower Churchill River to the Avalon Peninsula — began in 2012.

As of the latest available figures, from June, employment on the project approached 3,000 people.

Organizations: Nalcor Energy

Geographic location: Lower Churchill River

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Recent comments

  • Tony Rockel
    August 18, 2014 - 11:42

    If the concrete flows as freely as the BS we've been hearing from Ed Martin, the entire region will be buried in a few days.

  • Maurice E. Adams
    August 18, 2014 - 10:33

    According to section 3.2(a) of the Nalcor's Power Purchase Agreement "NLH shall only ... Schedule (MF Plant) Energy and Capacity ... to serve NL Native Load .... subject to the following restrictions and limitations: (i) Contracted Commitments, (ii) Capacity of the MF Plant, (iii) WMA limitations, (iv) hydrological conditions, and (v) Forgivable Events". .... So, "Contractual agreements" with Nova Scotia seem to take precedence.

    • J
      August 18, 2014 - 11:06

      Sorry, but that would be interpreted as NLH will only produce enough power to supply NL but if a contracted commitment required us to supply more power then that is how much power (cumulative) that MF would produce. Is that all you guys do is sit around complaining about MF. You must make for great dinner party guests.

    • Maurice E. Adams
      August 18, 2014 - 12:47

      Disagree with your interpretation "J". That section says (paraphrased) that the energy/capacity scheduled to serve NL Native Load is "subject to" restrictions and limitations ---- which include ""Contracted Commitments", etc.. So the MF energy/capacity that is scheduled to serve NL is subject to any limitation imposed by Contracted Commitments, etc.

    • Robb
      August 18, 2014 - 14:14

      Methinks Maurice need a new hobby.